Confusion over hurricane assistance site frustrates Pasco residents

New site opens November 5th in Dade City
Posted at 6:53 PM, Oct 23, 2017
and last updated 2017-10-23 18:53:40-04

 One after another, they showed up for nothing.
“Oh for Pete sakes,” exclaimed Sharon Vandenberghe.
The Land O’Lakes Recreation Complex was supposed in full swing Monday for Hurricane Irma relief.
But a a coupe of flyers taped on the window tell a different story.
“They’ve changed the date and the time,” said Vandenberghe.
Hundreds lined up Sunday when the program was scheduled to start.
So many came, the Pasco Sheriff’s Office had to come out to deal with the crowd.
Now Monday, even more came from all over the county, some even taking off work to be there.
They were all looking for assistance to help make up for food lost after Hurricane Irma.
“I’m kind of dumbfounded that they wouldn't let anybody know. They have our email our phone numbers. They have everything,” said Dave Gilleo, who drove from Holiday.
They were all ready to have the event at the Rec Center. 

Workers even painted lines on the street where the tents were going to go. 

But instead they were turning people away, handing them a piece of paper that has the new dates and the new location.
“Typical government. They don’t tell you until the last minute when they do something different,” said Vandenberghe.
Pasco County officials terminated its agreement with the Department of Children and Families last week to have the Food for Florida event in Land O’ Lakes, over concerns the Rec Center could handle large crowds like we’ve seen in other places.
But DCF said “all parties” agreed it was the best place, and the county commission signed off.
Now families will have to wait two more weeks, before they can go to the new location at the fairgrounds in Dade City.

It runs November 5-8.
“They probably had good reason, but it’s just hard to keep traveling around looking,” said Vandenberghe.
“When you drive this far for absolutely no reason. It does make you a little bit angry,” said Gilleo.
DCF said they publicized the change in newspapers, television and social media.
They even have signs posted on the way to the Rec Center along Collier Parkway.
But that hasn’t stopped many from coming anyway.